Mickelson grabs lead of Northern Trust Open

By Randall MellFebruary 17, 2012, 3:33 am

LOS ANGELES – They like spectacular final scenes here in the shadow of Tinseltown.

So Phil Mickelson obliged.

With the end of Act One nearing at the Northern Trust Open at Riviera, he brought down the house on a course that stars such as Douglas Fairbanks, Humphrey Bogart and Gregory Peck once called home.

With the sun sinking fast Thursday, Mickelson holed a 35-foot chip for birdie from behind the 18th green to finish off a round of 5-under-par 66. The shot was dramatically timed, giving Mickelson sole possession of the lead in the suspended first round.

It’s like Mickelson picked up right where he left off after winning in spectacular fashion Sunday at Pebble Beach.

His confidence is soaring. You can see it in his eyes. You can hear it in his voice.

“To carry the momentum over from Sunday felt really good,” Mickelson said. “Now we have a lot of golf to play on a really challenging golf course, and I’m going to have to stay really focused, but I feel like I’m playing well.”

You wouldn’t have thought the dwindling crowd at day’s end could make so much noise around the 18th green, but they let out a giant roar when Mickelson holed out.

“It wasn’t one I was really trying to make,” Mickelson said. “It was quick. It was downhill. I had to play about 4 or 5 feet of break, so it’s not one that you’re trying to get aggressive with. I was trying to get good speed and let it feed with the break, and I got fortunate that it went in.”

The birdie moved Mickelson a shot ahead of J.B. Holmes and Hunter Mahan, two ahead of Jonathan Byrd and Carl Pettersson. Sergio Garcia’s in a pack just three back, Luke Donald just four back.

“I don’t want to think too much about Phil because he’s a stud of a player,” Mahan said.

Mickelson opened the season struggling at the Humana Challenge, Farmers Insurance Open and Waste Management Phoenix Open, but he’s on fire now. Over his last 50 holes, he has made 15 birdies, one eagle and just one bogey.

“I felt very confident at the start of the year because I had played eight to 10 rounds exactly like Sunday’s final round at Pebble,” Mickelson said. “I was so amped up and ready to start the season that I came out and played three terrible tournaments. I don’t know what happened there, and my confidence took a little bit of a hit.

“To come back and play the way I played Sunday when I needed it most at Pebble, it gets my confidence right back to where I was starting the season. I’m excited, especially heading into our biggest event in April.”

That would be the Masters, where Mickelson will be looking to win a fourth green jacket.

That last roar Mickelson conjured echoed across Riviera and all of golf.

“Phil is a great player,” Mahan said. “But it’s too early to kind of worry about him. Back nine on Sunday maybe you can. If it’s me and him down the stretch, I might worry about it more.”

Cabreras take 1-shot lead in Father/Son

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 11:23 pm

ORLANDO, Fla. - Two-time major champion Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. birdied their last three holes for a 13-under 59 to take a one-shot lead Saturday in the PNC Father-Son Challenge.

Cabrera, a Masters and U.S. Open champion, is making his debut in this popular 36-hole scramble. His son said he practiced hard for 10 days. What helped put him at ease was watching his father make so many putts.

''We combined very well,'' Cabrera said. ''When I hit a bad shot, he hit a good one. That's the key.''

They had a one-shot lead over Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara, who are playing for the first time. That included a birdie on the last hole, which O'Meara attributed to the strength of his son.

''My little man hit it 58 yards by me on the 18th,'' said O'Meara, the Masters and British Open champion in 1998. ''It's a little easier coming in with a 6-iron.''

Defending champions David Duval and Nick Karavites rallied over the back nine at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club for a 61. They are trying to become the first father-son team to repeat as winners since Bernhard and Stefan Langer in 2006. Larry Nelson won two years in a row in 2007 and 2008, but with different sons.

''I'd imagine we have to break 60 tomorrow to have a chance to win, but hey, stranger things have happened,'' Duval said. ''I've even done it myself.''

Duval shot 59 at the Bob Hope Classic to win in 1999 on his way to reaching No. 1 in the world that year.

Duval and his stepson were tied with Bernhard Langer and 17-year-old Jason Langer, who made two eagles on the last five holes. This Langer tandem won in 2014.

Jack Nicklaus, playing with grandson G.T., opened with a 68.

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Woods' 2018 schedule coming into focus ... or is it?

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 16, 2017, 5:46 pm

Two weeks after his successful return to competition at the Hero World Challenge, Tiger Woods’ 2018 schedule may be coming into focus.

Golfweek reported on Saturday that Woods hopes to play the Genesis Open in February according to an unidentified source with “direct knowledge of the situation.”

Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg declined to confirm the 14-time major champion would play the event and told GolfChannel.com that Woods – who underwent fusion surgery to his lower back in April – is still formulating his ’18 schedule.

Woods’ foundation is the host organization for the Genesis Open and the event supports the Tiger Woods Learning Center in Anaheim, Calif.

The Genesis Open would be Woods’ first start on the PGA Tour since he missed the cut last January at the Farmers Insurance Open.

Rose weathering delayed Indonesian Masters

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 3:52 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead after eight holes of the third round Saturday when play was suspended for the day due to bad weather at the Indonesian Masters.

Rose was 3-under on the day and led his playing partners Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Scott Vincent. The Englishman led both players by a stroke after the second round was completed Saturday morning due to weather delays on Friday.

Brandt Snedeker withdrew with apparent heat exhaustion on Friday on the 11th hole of the second round. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.

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Lexi (wrist) WDs from Diamond Resorts Invitational

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 11:27 pm

Lexi Thompson on Friday withdrew from the Diamond Resorts Invitational, citing inflammation in her wrist. Thompson, who teamed with Tony Finau to finish tied for fourth place in last week's QBE Shootout, said she is under strict doctor's order not to hit golf balls until mid-January.

The Diamond Resorts Invitational is scheduled Jan. 12-14 at Tranquilo Golf Club in Orlando, Fla. The field for te 54-hole event includes LPGA and PGA Tour Champions players, as well as celebrities from the worlds or sports and entertainment.